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Oceans and Flowers

Today will also be, in large part, a post about flowers. Sorry about that. I've been lacking in exciting revelations to share with you all.

After my weekend (which was functionally a break from coffee) I resumed research this past Monday. Monday and Tuesday were normal, but today my host mom said she wanted to take me to one of her favorite cafes and kodawari (remember that word?) spots. It's a cafe and coffee shop called Umi and Orugoru (which means "the ocean and the music box") located on the island called Notojima (which is in the northerly region of Ishikawa prefecture). My host mom's mom (hereafter refered to as "Baian") went along with us and together we drove up to Notojima in my host mom's Nissan Leaf. Because the Leaf is a 100% electric car, we had to stop halfway there (and that halfway was an hour) to charge the car at a Nissan center for half an hour...and we couldn't drive terribly fast. This car is terrible and I never want one.

Finally, however, we made it. Umi is a very cute cafe with a stellar view.

Literally it's pink and lacy and the inside is filled with drying herbs, little pots and mugs for sale, and a bunch of dolphin photos/statues. Oh and it bumps up against the coast so from the inside you get views like this:

This whole area has dolphin watching boats aplenty, but we didn't have time to go today. Maybe another time.

The Mama, Satomi, was very nice and talked to me about how she wanted to create a space that is relaxing and where people can come to forget their troubles and slip into a more nostalgic time. Given that my reaction to the place was "pastel-colored dreamland" I think she's succeeded.

Also the coffee Umi served had flecks of gold in it. So that was classy.

From there, we drove to a weird flower-garden place called Fleuri. It was half artificially-sculpted interior greenhouse, half outdoor English-garden, half store...I didn't quite understand its purpose but it was pretty enough.

From here we embarked on the two hour drive home, which was made an hour longer by the fact that we 1. had to stop to recharge for 30 minutes anyways, and 2. when we arrived at the Nissan center someone else was already charging THEIR Leaf. This whole electric thing is so impractical for long road trips.

Tomorrow I head back to curio (and no, it's not just to try their new coffee gelato). Hard to believe I've already been gone over two weeks!


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